Rukmani Palanivel Rajan has been appointed the chairperson of Madurai Meenakshi Sundareswarar Temple Board of Trustees by the Tamil Nadu government. She is the first woman in the state’s history to head a temple trustee board. Earlier, Rukmani had served as a trustee in the board between 2006 and 2011. In November 2023, she was appointed as a trustee again, along with four others – PKM Chelliah, D Subbulakshmi, M Srinivasan, and S Meena – by the Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments (HR&CE) Department.
Rukmani is married to Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam leader and former Assembly Speaker PTR Palanivel Rajan. Tamil Nadu’s Minister for Information Technology P Thiaga Rajan is her son.
According to The Hindu, the election to the post could not be conducted within the stipulated time, following which the HR&CE Department asked the government to make an appointment. The government then appointed Rukmani as the chairperson.
Minister PTR expressed his gratitude to the government for the appointment. “My mother Rukmani Palanivel Rajan, who served as a Trustee of the Meenakshi Amman Temple between 2006-2011, has now been appointed chairperson of the Trustees. I am grateful to the Honourable CM MK Stalin because she has become the first woman chair of the temple where the Goddess reigns,” he said.